by Jeff Thomason
Copyright 2012 Jeff Thomason
is a work of fiction. All names, characters, and places are
fictional. Any resemblance to real people—either living or dead—or
places is purely coincidental. All prominent characters, names, and
places are trademarks of Jeff Thomason. All rights reserved.
Cover uses Urban Skyline At Night by Petr Kratochvil
My name is Venn Di Graham. I’m sure you grimaced at the mention of my name, but hear me out. I’m not the villain they’ve made me out to be. I’m really not. It’s all been a big mistake. None of this was supposed to happen. My intentions were good. It was greed that twisted my gift into that … monstrosity hanging over our heads. But don’t let the current state of affairs mislead you into thinking the project was a bad idea; it wasn’t. The theory was sound; the principles noble. That’s why I’m recording this … this … I’m not sure what to call it. My last confession? No, that makes it sound religious, and I certainly don’t want that. It’s just … well … maybe I should start at the beginning. Then you’ll see I am completely innocent of any wrongdoing. In fact, I’m just another victim like you.
It all began in the fourth grade. The day was like any other. I sat trying to get through yet another lecture by my teacher Ms. Newman. Who could have guessed those few minutes were about to change my life? Never doubt for a moment that teachers can change the world. Mine certainly did. I wasn’t a very dedicated student then. I’m sure that surprises you. Someone with my achievements must have been a prodigy from the beginning, you’re probably saying to yourself. Well, I wasn’t. And I didn’t need to be. I’ve always believed people are a result of their environment not their genetics, and I am proof of that. It was my environment that started me on the path to becoming the preeminent authority in astronomical phenomena I am today—not some random protein sequences inherited from two people who had too much to drink one night. No, it was all environment, specifically, a teacher who understood the importance of science and wasn’t afraid to share it with us despite the barrage of complaints hurled at her by certain ignorant parents who accused her of “corrupting” her students with all her “theories” and other blasphemes. It was all a load of hooey. She taught science. Science deals with facts, not stories and superstitions used to justify an antiquated code of morality.